Sunday, February 3, 2013

Friends


It's a pretty simple word to describe a lot of different people in my life.  I enjoy the fact that I am blessed with several friends in my life, some closer than others but several none the less.  That didn't always seem to be the case.  Growing up I didn't seem to have many friends.  What I did have was what seemed like a cousin.  No she and I are not really related.  Her aunt married my uncle before either one of us were born (Thank God for Uncle Mike and Nanny Fern)  The best part about this union was that Jodys family was now my family and my family was now her family.  Before we ever even knew it God was making us best friends.

Mom has told me more than one story of how Nanny would come get me for days, and keep me until my mom was nearly begging for me back.  Mom didn't drive so Nanny used that to her advantage.  I love my momma more than anything, but I am glad that Nanny built that bond and always took me.  I am gonna guess that it was so much time spent with Nanny that my friendship with Jody was formed.  There is a picture somewhere of Jody and I as little babies (if I had found it you would also see it here).  She is a bit younger than me (I won't say how much because being old still gets to her a bit) but as long as I can remember she has always been the constant friend in my life.

I remember us being yelled at to stop running in the house, or kicked out of the kitchen because her grandma was cooking only to be called back to eat at the table and then do dishes.  Some of my best memories are from playing at grandma and grandpa Thulins house with Jody (and the other cousins) rolling down the hill in the back yard, hiding in the closet from Londa or Bub, building tents in the house with sheets and blankets, pretending we were pregnant and using the riding lawn mower hood as a surgical table to cut open a belly and get a baby out (raise our shirts and take the baby doll that we stuffed there back out)  We had pretty wild imaginations :) Christmas time with her family was just like Christmas with mine except it was on Christmas eve.  I remember oh so very much.  Getting in trouble for getting dirty for playing in the creek that was in Nannys yard when she lived across the street from grandma & grandpa Thulin.  Oh and I drove by that street not so long ago and that hill in the back yard well it is not near as high as I remember it being, not sure how we rolled down it and that creek that the banks were taller than us and we thought we were out of grown ups site  yeah that creek...well from the road and the yard of both houses you can see all the way down it.  That is probably why we were allowed to play there sometimes because we were never really out of site (dad gum, sneaky grown ups)
1980 something
that's a Cindy Lauper side ponytail she is sporting here :)

It seems I only got to see Jody when I was with Nanny or when mom and Nanny hung out (they did that a lot) because we went to different schools.  But different schools didn't matter.  We were born to be friends.  In the 4th grade my parents told us we were moving.  I hated the thought of leaving the only school I ever knew, but then I was also super happy.  I was moving to the school that my best friend went to.  We thought this was awesome and it seemed that way for a bit until I actually got there and the friends she had at school instantly hated me.  Looking back I think it was because we had a bond that nothing could break not even friends from different schools and I think that scared them.  ;)  Anyway it wouldn't matter for long as we learned that she would be moving to Texas not long after I got to move to her school.  I was crushed.  My best friend moved away to have to make new friends in a new state while I stayed behind and had to try to make friends with a bunch of girls who seemed to hate me.  It worked out well anyway, I still see some of the girls I went to school with now that we are grown ups and my girls even go to school with some of their kids.  But my best friend moved to Texas.  Nanny did her best to keep our friendship alive.  I don't know if she planned it that way or if it just happened because I got treated like her own daughter so often that I still seen Jody every time her and her mom would come to visit her family.  Even once got to take a road trip with Nanny and Mikey to see her in Texas.  We wrote letters back and forth, though we didn't talk every single day we still managed to keep being friends. 
She moved back to Oklahoma after high school.  I was old enough to drive and got to go see her more now that she lived in Oklahoma and our friendship appeared as if we had never been apart. 
20130203_182742-1.jpg
'95  we all look like babies
In the next few years after high school and her moving home I met the man of my dreams she was my maid of honor standing right there beside me reminding me to breath, holding onto Stephens ring so I wouldn't loose it.  She never complained(to me anyway) about a thing (even those crazy dresses I had picked out, or how much taller the groomsman was than her as silly as it looked)  her and her momma done up all the wonderful flowers for my big day and they were great.  She did the best job at being a best friend that day.

'96 on Jodys wedding day. 
She was such a pretty bride.


Fast forward one year.  Stephen and I were out for dinner for our one year anniversary and guess who we ran into...that's right.  My dear friend Jody and her boyfriend John (Jike).  We talked for a minute and we went our own ways.  Now I don't remember if it was the next day or a few days later she told me that he proposed to her that night.  We both thought that was sweet that she got engaged on my anniversary.
 
We have been through having babies, adopting more babies, building loving homes for our families, living in different towns to living right down the street from each other, from living in the city limits to learning to be farm girls.  Been through jobs that kept us in touch every single day to jobs that tried to end our friendship.  At my last job she called me up and asked me if she brought me some of the girls receiving blankets if I could cut them into squares for her to make a quilt.  I said yes, she brought them by work and dropped them off.  This memory will be stuck in my head forever because one of the girls that worked with me asked why she was dropping off blankets.  I told her what we were up to and her response was "why?"  to which I answered "because she is my friend"  She then said "i don't know that I have one friend that would do the things you do for your friends."  That sticks with me because I find it absolutely heart breaking.  I don't know what it is like to not have one of those friends.  You know the kind that would drop anything they were working on just to come help me if I needed them.  That is the kind of friendship God has given to Jody and I.  And I pray that we have this type of friendship until we are gone.  One our kids will be able to talk about and tell their kids about.

Technology has been great at helping in keeping us in touch, cell phones with unlimited texting and social media that allows us to share our families photos with each other more often.  Social media once said we weren't friends however so sometimes maybe that isn't the best way to communicate.  :)   Yep according to every ones favorite social media network (facebook) we were no longer friends.  Ok well that isn't exactly the whole story.  I was working a new job (my current place of employment) and my schedule required me to work nights.  Let me just say it is very difficult to have a normal life much less friendships with anyone when every single person you know is awake during the day and you have to be sleeping because you have to work while they all are sleeping at night.  This took its toll on our friendship worse that her living in a new state with new friends.  I was working nights and the only other person that understood this was Stephanee.  She has been one of my best friends for many years now, but because we were both working similar schedules it allowed for us to spend more time with each other.  Jody mistook this as me not wanting to be her friend anymore, she was sure because I was unable to contribute that it was over and unfriended me on facebook.  When I tried to talk to her one day facebook kept telling me she wasn't my friend.  Stupid facebook yes she is we have been friends forever.  What is going on (is what I was thinking and yelling at the computer sadly)  I called her because I was sure there was a problem with facebook and wanted to get it fixed.  Well after a very emotional phone call I had learned because lack of attention and lack of proper communication she thought we were no longer friends.  I can assure you that was not the case.  That was never the case at all.  Nothing in life so far has been bad enough for us not to talk and work it out. 

just a few weeks ago
(wow  we look just the same as we did back then)
NOT!!  he he
So here we are much older and sometimes much wiser, being moms of teenagers a couple of which are driving, a couple who are experiencing having braces at the same time and all her little girls are in school now.  I have a schedule that better fits life as a mom, wife & best friend better and Jody and I have made a point to make time for lunch days, we have even started doing what we have dubbed as DIY days when I'm off and she isn't subbing.  Life is doing well for us all.  We share what works and what doesn't about life whether it is about money, bills, hubbys, kids, chickens, and just about anything that comes up.  I love that we have that bond that no matter what is going on we read each other like a book.  I can see her texts or post or even her face and know when something is bothering her and when asked she opens up and the same goes for me.  She knows me from cover to cover and I love that I can tell her anything.  I don't have to beg her to help or listen she just does.  And always has the best advise.  Because that's what friends do.  They help you fix what's wrong with life.  [They also make sure there is a label hiding the unflattering things about you in a photo before they post it on facebook...right]  he he

Friendships are like a marriage in my book they require as much communication and time as a marriage and both parties must be willing to contribute to the friendship or it will eventually fail.  It can't be one sided and neither participant can be selfish.  You must always be willing to bend and make changes and talk about what's bothering you for things to work just like having a long happy marriage.  This is the longest relationship I have ever had...i mean really...30 something years is a long time. Again no exact numbers here or she will kill me.  She is already gonna want to beat me when she sees all these photos of her I have posted.  But I did warn her I was working on something.   She says we will be friends until we are old and senile and even then we will be new friends every day. 

Don't ask me why I felt the need to write about her, these post just happen.  They sit in my brain and sometimes beg to be out for everyone to see.  I don't have a reason except that I found the first picture the one from the 80s and knew instantly that I would be posting about the awesomeness that is our friendship.  We may not always agree on everything and I don't think that is what God intended either.  I think he put us together in spite of our differences.  She keeps me in line and I help her be a bit more crazy.  We just work.  Just like He planned for us to.

I love writing and when I write I never get emotional, I just spill my thoughts onto the blog page.  I sometimes do get all teary eyed when one of my girls wants me to read what I have written (they like hearing my stories but don't enjoy taking the time to read them their selves) but today I have had to stop and start more times than I'd like to admit and walk away while writing.  I even went a head and sent her a message and told her not to read the blog if she needed to be around people, I know her and she has at this point probably used up half a box of tissue and is about to text me and tell me she is gonna kill me. 

Thanks for reading.  This one was kinda long...and to think it was the highlight version of it all :)
I love you dear Jody thanks for always putting up with me.

Have a great week
tammy c
 

1 comment:

  1. Isn't it funny you can take just one picture and tell a life story... since she has been in it for almost all your life!!! You two are perfect for one another I'm sure what one doesn't think of the other one does!! Great story have one myself that it made me think of!! Priceless memories..thanks for sharing Tammy!!! Love ya Aunt T

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